Government MP Ann Sudmalis has told her local paper she considered quitting after sustained attacks from Labor during question time last week. Sudmalis also said that sexism played a role in the way she had been singled out by the Labor Party after she defended cuts to penalty rates to Fairfax, saying they were a “gift” to young people trying to get a job. The member for Gilmore in New South Wales appeared to be distressed in Parliament after her comments were raked over in question time. Speaking to the Illawarra Mercury yesterday, Sudmalis explained she had thought about stepping down “for maybe half an hour” but the experience ultimately made her stronger and confirmed her view that women needed to be encouraged to run for Parliament. The report says:

“Mrs Sudmalis, who was visibly distressed in Parliament, said her emotion was due to ‘the unfairness of it all’. 

She said she was targeted first as an individual, then as the holder of the seat.

‘I don’t believe they would have gone after a male, three days in a row,’ she said.

‘They would have moved it around, and taken it to a different member, but no, they did three hits in three days, which is most unusual.

‘They don’t do that to a bloke.'”

Sudmalis didn’t back away from her original comments though, continuing to defend cuts to penalty rates.

Peter Fray

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